Church opened by Conan Doyle gets a makeover

Fixing the Arthur Conan Doyle plaque onto the renewed frontage of Worthing Spiritualist Church
Fixing the Arthur Conan Doyle plaque onto the renewed frontage of Worthing Spiritualist Church

THE scaffolding came down to reveal the newly-refurbished frontage of Worthing Spiritualist Church in Grafton Road last week.

The church was originally opened by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle in 1926, creator of the Sherlock Holmes novels, who described the building as “a beautiful compact little Church” in his opening speech.

The famous author and spiritualist travelled to Worthing from his home in Crowborough to open the church on March 24, 1926. He became interested in Spiritualism following the death of his son in the First World War and, after several years of extensive research, became a spiritualist himself.

Graham Baker, stonemason and Sherlock Holmes fan, provided the new foundation plaques and refurbished the Conan Doyle plaque. W

Val Upton, church president, said: “Those who serve within the church are ever mindful of the good work that takes place within the four walls. The restoration work that has taken place is a token of our respect to the founders of this beautiful building who worked so hard all those years ago to realise their dream, and it is our duty to make sure that that dream lives on.”

The renovation work was done by Worthing builder NPH Bennett and GD Baker Monumental Stoneworks of Lancing. Nick Bennett employed an expert in exterior mouldings to restore the finials, angel heads and render profile.

The church celebrated the completion of the renovation with a Harvest Tea on Saturday, followed by a demonstration of mediumship.

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